orange, white & blue

Dark chambray shirt like this, Joe's white skinnies, orange leather bag, Tory Burch sunglasses, Gorjana silver necklace, braided tan leather belt, Seychelles wedge sandals. The pop of orange from this bag is the perfect way to wake up a classic white and dark blue combination. Tan accessories keep things from getting too busy. I love these jeans. Not only are they made in the U.S.A., but the denim is thick enough to smooth things over (if you know what I mean!),…

sunny corner

This sunny corner of our home wasn't horrible before (see before photo below), but it was a bit blah. My goal was to make it a place that attracted us to it with comfy chairs, a good solid table, and an area rug to make it feel cozy. The original cracked, old, travertine tile was swapped out for large format, gray, matte tile. I added natural roman shades mounted at the top of the large picture windows, which keep a low…

diy white cut-offs

This is the second time in as many weeks that I've taken rough, sharp implements to my wardrobe, but I'm rehabilitating pieces that were on their way out...really! These white, distressed Calvin Klein capris were looking very baggy in the legs (white pants are fitted and sleek this season), and they were of questionable length, disturbingly similar to those unflattering 'I give up' pants seen wandering through supermarkets and craft stores every summer. The key here is to hasten slow…

grilled pork tenderloin with cherry salsa

This delicious summer-time recipe was a big hit at my house last night. The fresh cherries and cilantro are perfect with the tender pork straight from the grill.  This is an easy one to throw together in less than an hour but you could save time by marinating the tenderloins a day ahead and keeping them in the fridge and making the salsa early too. I cooked it on my indoor grill but it would make for glamorous outdoor grill fare,…

the ‘no more dieting’ app

Counting calories bores me to tears but, after countless crazy fad diets, I've come to the conclusion that it's only about how many calories I eat every day. I've had the Lose It! app on my iphone (free for iphone and android) for nearly four years now and it actually works. Each day I type in what I eat and the app makes that process as pain-free as possible with it's bar code scanner, it's massive data base (it includes chain…

beach day

We've had a week of gloomy weather in some parts of L.A., with sprinkles of rain (which my garden adores!). So as the weekend approaches I thought I'd do my version of a sun dance to bring on some good beach weather for everyone who has been cooped up at work all week and could do with some sunshine (extreme heat waves need not apply). Here are my current beach/pool side must haves: Cover-up: See Design Navy blue polk-a-dot tunic $70, Splendid…

mantel mishmash

This unwieldy black marble edifice is not something we're planning to keep in our pared down post and beam remodel, and with TV's as slim as a sandwich and fireplaces much neater than they used to be there's no need for it to jut so far out into the family room. But it didn't make the cut in this year's remodel budget and it does it's job well, keeping us warm, cozy, and entertained. The problem is the mantel. There…

fresh herb and garlic meatballs with quinoa

Somehow, this recipe makes meatballs seem like a summer meal, maybe it's the quinoa but it ends up being not-too-heavy, delicious, comfort food. I guess you could substitute with store-bought, frozen meatballs but then you'd miss out on the fresh herb and garlic flavors and they are pretty quick to throw together for a tasty, casual dinner for four.  This recipe is from one of my favorite Australian chefs, so you may need to look up the odd metric measurement. (more…)

distressed denim diy

These old Rock, Paper, Denim & Cloth jeans had lost their way a little. Not quite boyfriend jeans, definitely not skinnies and they were nicely worn in.I found the coarsest (is that a word?) sandpaper in my garage. I think this piece was from a belt sander, very rough! I rubbed lightly, length-ways, wearing thin spots in places jeans wear out; knees, thighs, hips.Where you're ready to wear right through the denim, place a piece of cardboard or a folded…

when does inspiration strike?

If you want to be a writer, if you already are a writer, if being a writer is a secret, long-held dream, this book needs to be on your shelf. Not convinced?    Someone once asked Somerset Maugham if he wrote on a schedule or only when struck by inspiration. "I write only when inspiration strikes," he replied. "Fortunately it strikes every morning at nine o'clock sharp."     That's a pro.    In terms of Resistance, Maugham was saying, "I…